Staedion builds new building project De Schaloen for a diverse and vibrant neighbourhood

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In the Moerwijk area of The Hague, construction is underway for a new building project named De Schaloen. Staedion, with financing from BNG Bank, is building 570 homes, consisting of 222 social rental homes and 348 free-sector rental homes. The mix of different rental types will attract a diverse group of residents with both middle and lower incomes, fostering increased diversity in the neighbourhood to benefit both new and existing residents.

'The combination of various types of rental homes creates a diverse and vibrant neighbourhood.' 

With around 44,000 rental units (including homes, commercial spaces and parking spaces), Staedion is the largest housing corporation in The Hague and the surrounding area. 'It is our ambition to do our part in addressing and alleviating the housing market shortage', says Adamo Ritmeester, Director of Finance, Operations and ICT at Staedion. The Schaloen project contributes not only to Staedion's goals, it also aligns with the municipality's objectives for the Southwest district. The municipality aims to enhance the liveability of the neighbourhood, which is why Staedion is constructing sustainable and affordable homes for various target groups.

A lengthy process

Ritmeester: 'As a project, De Schaloen had a rather lengthy process, having to navigate all phases of the Housing Act. Originally, this was a project we wanted to develop independently, both for social and mid-priced rentals.' However, due to a legal change, Staedion was no longer allowed to independently develop the mid-priced rental segment. Consequently, Staedion partnered with a property developer to find an investor. 'Although we initially secured an investor, market developments over the past year and a half prompted many investors to pull back. This allowed us to revert to our original plan', says Ritmeester. 

Diverse neighbourhood

The area earmarked for De Schaloen initially housed about 200 outdated social rental homes. 'Renovation or transformation was not viable. At that time, we assessed the neighbourhood and concluded that there was ample space to construct 570 homes. The neighbourhood was overly homogeneous, while there was plenty of room for a mix of different home types that cater to a range of demographics and income brackets', says Gijsbert van Herk, Chairman of the Board at Staedion 

'We advocate creating a blend of residents with diverse incomes to counter division and segregation in the city. This approach provides residents with opportunities for advancement, allowing them to stay in their own neighbourhood longer. Additionally, it makes a tangible contribution to mitigating the housing shortage in the city', says Van Herk. 

Staedion bouwt nieuwbouwproject De Schaloen voor een diverse en leefbare wijk 

Partnership with BNG Bank 

BNG Bank had previously financed social rental projects for Staedion. It marks a milestone in the collaboration between Staedion and BNG Bank that BNG Bank is now also financing the construction of the free-sector rental homes. Van Herk: 'Due to the initial investor's withdrawal, we did not have much time. Nonetheless, the financial plan was completed within half a year. This was feasible because BNG Bank possesses a thorough understanding of the housing corporation sector. Our long-standing partnership also played a crucial role in this swift and successful collaboration.' 

Driven by social impact

BNG Bank sees the realisation of medium-term rental as an important social task; given the shortage in this housing market segment, but also because it promotes circulation from the social rental segment and creates more diverse neighbourhoods. We are therefore pleased that BNG Bank can contribute to the realisation of the beautiful De Schaloen project through this financing. What is special here is that Staedion has picked up the gauntlet where other parties have backed out.

BNG Bank is of and for the public sector. Everything we do revolves around creating social impact. We discuss this with our clients. We make choices on that basis. We are not motivated by profit, but by social impact. That is what drives us.

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